Clare’s lack of scoring power was reflected in the fact they only hit the target from play on one occasion. Kerry, for their part, held their opponents scoreless for the opening 27 minutes and went in 1-6 to 0-2 ahead at the break thanks to a Brian Crowley goal.
A Gavin O’Grady goal from a penalty sealed it for Kerry in the 48th minute after he was hauled down in possession.
Kerry began the game in sprightly fashion and led by 0-5 to 0-0 by the 16th minute, setting a trend for the rest of the tie. When Crowley goaled in the 19th minute, after a good Greg Gibson pass, he made it 1-5 and then Paul Kennelly added a pointed free to put nine between the sides.
Clare eventually got on the scoreboard and landed two frees from team captain Gary Leahy before half-time.
In the second period Kerry continued to dominate. Clare’s only score from play came at the death when mid-fielder Darran O’Neill pointed from a distance.
Scorers for Kerry: G O’Grady 1-3 (1-0 pen, 1 45), P Kennelly 0-5 (1f), B Crowley 1-0, T Hickey 0-2, B O’Sullivan, C Keating 0-1 each.
Scorers for Clare: G Leahy 0-6 (6fs), D O’Neill 0-1.
KERRY: S Murphy; S Lynch, K O’Dwyer, D Wrenn; G Gibson, D Daly, G Crowley; A Garnett, B O’Sullivan; B Crowley, C Keating, P O’Connor; G O’Grady, P Kennelly, T Hickey (capt).
Subs: M Brennan for Garnett (29), G Sayers for O’Connor (40), K Hurley for Crowley (43), C Horan for Lynch (51), R Horgan for Daly (58), P Ó Sé for Gibson (59).
CLARE: E Tubridy; J O’Dea, S Collins, C O’Brien; B Carrig, S Haugh, S Lineen; D O’Neill, K O’Connor; E Brew, Thomas Downes, S O’Driscoll; C Lillis, G Leahy (capt), K Malone.
Subs: C Ó hAanféin for Brew (23), D Nagle for Lineen (33), E Hanrahan for Thomas Downes (37), Tom Downes for O’Brien (bc, 39), C Normoyle for Tubridy (bc, 47), K Sexton for Lillis (54).
Referee: J Bermingham (Cork).